Video Gaming (EL 250)

5 Jan 2006

Ex 2a: Beyond the Review (Draft) 10pts

You will post the final draft on your weblog, but post the first draft to J-Web. Since the "new games journalism" we've been talking about does include a personal element, and because the students whom I know may not know each other very well (or at all), I'd like each of you to post on your own blog a very brief statement about how your personal experiences with games might affect the way you write. You are welcome to copy and paste from earlier J-Web exercises, and you are welcome to go into depth if you like, but three or four sentences would be enough.

For Exercise 2, you may choose to expand the review you wrote for Ex 1, or you may focus on a different game/topic. (Note: Ex 5 will ask you to choose a game that you want to study for your final paper. Please don't choose the same game for Ex 2 and Ex 5.)

Instead of writing another ordinary review, write a more reflective, thoughtful, intense essay. Trim the discussion of the controls, graphics, and technical specifications. While you should still specify the exact title of the game, what year it came out, and what system it's for, you should focus more on the passions and pleasures and significance of playing this game. 500 words.

From State of Play, suggestions for articles that game magazine readers might want to read: "an intimate account of a game that the writer knows well, and around which a community has grown with it's own emergent rules and traditions…it's in the magazine's interest to explore and get involved with gaming communities and to revel in gaming experiences that only become accessible after months of play. After all, there is still so much to say about Manhunt, about Project Zero 2, about Animal Crossing. There's a wealth of material out there. It could just be a lazy list feature (say, 'the best endings in Silent Hill 2 and what they mean'). People love lazy list features. It could be a decent one-on-one interview with a game's creators, or a chat with its biggest fans."

Also, "Subjective journalism does NOT mean glorifying the writer. Notice how, by the end of 'Bow, Nigger' we know everything about the player's experiences, the thoughts, feelings and theories that emerge during the short light saber battle, but we know nothing about the author him/herself. It's subjective, but it isn't self-publicising. It isn't autobiography."

While I agree that gaming culture at large doesn't need gaming-themed autobiography, I'd consider some autobiography, as long as the focus is on the game. For a good example, See M Heller, "Adventure."

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Is this like an expanded version of the review?

Posted by: Leslie Rodriguez at January 4, 2006 07:12 PM

For the first part of this assignment involving personal experiences, I would like to refer you to an entry I wrote on Dec. 30, prior to begining the course. It tells my specific experiences with gaming.

Posted by: Leslie Rodriguez at January 4, 2006 07:14 PM

What time is this due?

Posted by: Kayla Lukacs at January 5, 2006 02:06 AM

The deadline is 4pm today.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 5, 2006 09:47 AM

Evan came by this afternoon asking for help finding an interactive fiction game to use for this assigment. I pointed him to Baf's IF Archive, and specifically to a page that lists what awards (best puzzles, best writing, best setting) that each game was nominated for.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 5, 2006 01:42 PM
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